It’s been seven-and-a-half years since we lost actress Marcia Wallace, best known as the voice of Edna Krabappel, the cynical, chain-smoking elementary school teacher on The Simpsons. The show bid farewell to the character two years later, during its 25th season, but on Sunday night — during its 32nd season — they brought her back. Or at least her voice.
In the latest episode, entitled “Dairy Queen,” Bart happens upon Mrs. Krabappel’s old diary, found amongst a yard sale put on by Ned Flanders. (As you may recall, she later became Flanders’ second wife, leaving him widowed twice, though her character’s death was never explicitly mentioned on the show.)
Therein Bart finds some unexpectedly encouraging from the ever-flustered teacher, which are read aloud, from old recordings made by Wallace before her passing. It’s a bittersweet callback to one of the show’s great supporting characters, whose love life was too few hills and lots of valleys.
Wallace, who was a cancer survivor and activist, died from pneumonia and sepsis. She won an Emmy for voicing Mrs. Krabappel back in 1992, though she had already been a well-loved talent thanks to her role as the receptionist on The Bob Newhart Show in the 1970s.
You can watch a clip from the episode, featuring Wallace’s voice, in the video above.